US: Kashmir a bilateral issue between India and Pakistan

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US dismisses Sharif's plea on Kashmir
Washington, Oct 26:  The US has dismissed Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif's plea for an intervention on Kashmir issue, asserting that its position on this matter has not changed and would encourage New Delhi and Islamabad for a dialogue.

"(Our) position has not changed. (It's) up to India and Pakistan, US continues to encourage dialogue between two countries," State Department spokesperson Jen Psaki said during her maiden Twitter briefing on Friday.

Psaki was responding to a question on the statements made by Sharif during his trip to Washington this week, during which he repeatedly urged the Obama Administration to use its growing influence over India to resolve the Kashmir issue.

Ahead of Sharif's trip, the Obama Administration had said its position on Kashmir has not changed "even an iota" and that it considers Kashmir a bilateral issue between India and Pakistan.

US: Will continue to encourage dialogue between the two countries

In his address to the US Institute of Peace, Sharif had urged the US to use its influence over India to resolve the Kashmir issue. "With its growing influence in India, the US now has the capacity to do more, to help the two sides resolve their core disputes, including Kashmir, and in promoting a culture of cooperation," Sharif said early this week.

"We very much support improvements in this (Pakistan -India) relationship and we will continue to use our influence with both governments to encourage them to move in that direction," a senior State Department official was quoted as saying by the Associated Press of Pakistan during a briefing for Pakistani journalists after the conclusion of Sharif's trip.


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